Aurora City Council Rejects Naperville Redundant Fiber Network Proposal


Despite being one of the wealthiest cities (in terms of cities with over 75,000 population), the suburban Chicago city of Naperville has to wait for a redundant fiber optic connectivity. The Aurora City Council Committee did not approve the proposal to deploy a second fiber optic network in Naperville citing reasons of higher deployment cost.

Aurora City officials have been considering plans for a redundant fiber-optic network since November 2018. The Finance Committee opposed the idea and questioned whether the primary motive for the connection was the secondary connection to Naperville or economic development of four lots at the southeast corner of the intersection.

Aurora city council hall building with the flag of the United StatesThe technology officers of the City wanted to build a redundant network. Aurora already has a connection to Naperville’s system, which is used for emergency communication systems by Aurora and Naperville cities. The Proposal for the second one was for backup. The communication outages in November for 10 hours and in December for a few days, compromised the connection between the Aurora and Naperville public safety communications systems. This point towards the importance of building a redundant network, technology officials said.

The Aldermen (elected members from the wards) on the Finance Committee were looking at a plan to spend US$178,137 to push the city’s fiber optic line from the southwest side of Diehl and Eola roads to the southeast side.

The Committee pointed out that adding fiber network for economic development reasons is the purview of OnLight Aurora, the city’s not-for-profit corporation that handles the city’s fiber-optic network. In that case, companies seeking the connection should pay for the hookups, not the city.

Naperville, located 45 km west of Chicago is a city in DuPage and Will counties in the U.S. state of Illinois. Naperville was founded in 1831 and developed into the fourth-largest city in Illinois. Naperville has a population of approx. 150,000. Naperville was ranked as the wealthiest city in the Midwest and the eleventh wealthiest in the nation. It was ranked among the nation’s safest cities by USA Today and Business Insider.

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